The Massachusetts Nurses Association has affiliated with the union calling itself National Nurses United, which is a conglomeration of state nurses’ unions spearheaded by the California Nurses Association (CNA). By aligning itself, the MNA appears to be adopting much of the radicalism that the CNA is known for—often at the cost of the union calling RNs away from their patients in order to strike.
In a press release this morning, Tufts Medical Center (with whom the MNA is negotiating) called attention to the seeming insincerity of the MNA in trying to reach a deal with the medical center–as evidenced by the MNA’s abandoning negotiations so members of its bargaining team could travel to Chicago to engage in a union rally there, as well as conducting strike training for its members.
BOSTON, March 28, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Tufts Medical Center today called on the Massachusetts Nurses Association and its parent union National Nurses United to stop undermining negotiation sessions with the hospital. Tufts Medical Center is committed to resuming negotiations today with the MNA, even as the union continues to place roadblocks in the way of negotiating progress.
Tufts Medical Center recently learned that the MNA/NNU abruptly ended last weeks negotiating session so members of its bargaining committee could attend an NNU rally the following day at the University of Chicago Medical Center. MNA negotiators had previously agreed that they would stay as late as necessary with Tufts MC negotiators to work toward agreement on a contract extension proposal from the hospital.
For todays session, the MNA/NNU has already established a hard stop prior to 6 p.m. so bargaining committee members can host a prearranged strike training with members. This is the second time the MNA/NNU have arranged meetings on already-scheduled bargaining days, essentially preempting any possibility of working late on an agreement good for Tufts MC nurses.
The NNU has been pushing an aggressive agenda of rigid, mandatory staffing ratios across the country, which has led to repeated pickets, strike threats and even some walkouts at hospitals in California, Maine, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Washington DC, Minnesota, Illinois and Massachusetts. The NNU has already scheduled a strike vote next month at the University of Chicago Medical Center, where the rally took place that Tufts Medical Center MNA bargaining committee members attended.
By their actions, it appears the MNA is looking forward to abandoning the patients at Tuft’s.